Tuesday, July 21, 2009

MY PRIVATE VINYL SPEAKEASY

I went to see my music "dealer" the other day, a fellow vinyl enthusiast I met courtesy Craigslist who hooks me up with some great vinyl every so often. I periodically schedule times where I can head down to his rec room and leisurely peruse the stacks of wall to wall vinyl to help satisfy my musical addiction.

While I browse he plays me some great samples - blues records, dub reggae, post-punk, whatever suits the moment, and I leave with a small stack of records to take home. It is an awesome experience, kind of like an exclusive speak-easy for music geeks. Of course now that I have a regular supplier I know that I am hooked.

Here are the recent gems that I picked up during my last vinyl foraging engagement;

Brian Eno - "Taking Tiger Mountain (By Strategy)" (1974)

This is Eno's second post-Roxy Music album. I was inspired to find this one after listening to his recent David Byrne collaboration and remembering that he is actually a decent and engaging singer, a fact overshadowed by his ambient pieces and role as a producer.

Brian Eno - "Ambient 4: on Land" (1982)

One in a series of Eno's many ambient recordings. I am looking forwarding to relaxing to this one late at night with some really good headphones for closer scrutiny. A recording like this makes a good case for having vinyl on hand, as this one clearly benefits from the dynamic range inherent to vinyl.

Scientist & Peter Chemist - "1999 Dub" (1984)


I have never been a huge fan of dub reggae, though this one was intriguing and was a great soundtrack for my record foraging (my dealer played this one and got me hooked). It is fun to imagine the pre-millennial & dystopian themes in this one from the vantage point of the mid-80's when it was recorded.

Patti Smith - "Radio Ethiopia" (1976)

I am a recent convert to much of Patti Smith's work, and I am especially fond of her earlier albums which often hold a sense of blistering urgency and poetic spirit that I admire. This record was criticized by some at the time for being too "self indulgent", though from my vantage point this is hardly a problem.

The Waterboys - "Fisherman's Blues" (1988)

This one is a bit of a sentimental favourite, an example of how to do Celtic rock the right way.

I will soon be able to convert these to digital format if anyone wants a fix of some engaging music to enhance their aural palette. Now excuse me, my turntable is calling me!

10 comments:

Allison said...

Sounds like a little piece of heaven! I eagerly await the day to have a room filled with music and books. Its great to have a good supplier, too. :)

Westcoast Walker said...

Thanks Allison, it is indeed a little slice of heaven on earth to be surrounded by inspiring music and books - things that elevate the soul to new heights!

Barbara Bruederlin said...

Wow, what a great and eclectic sampling you brought home! I am seriously envious of your relationship with your dealer.

Sean Wraight said...

Some serious listening ahead of you my friend with those inspired choices. I am thoroughly jealous of course since all of these selections will in fact sound absolutely perfect on vinyl.

Got me to thinking though... What little switch in our DNA made this stuff so appealing to us? I mean honestly, I am truly excited for you with this stuff...

Ahhh, the joys of being a vinyl junkie.

s

P.S. Taking Tiger Mountain will blow your mind!

Liberality said...

Cool stuff you got. I have the Enos and the Patti Smith but the others I've yet to listen to. Patti was my ideal rock star when I was 15 years old. I like her newer stuff too.

Randal Graves said...

Always groovy to discover new stuff, but please, modern artists, enough with the vinyl-only releases. Not all of us have turntables. ;-)

Comrade Kevin said...

It is interesting that you've recently listened to the Brian Eno stuff. I downloaded both of those albums within the last month and I have to say that I was not particularly impressed with either.

My taste in music is very particular and very picky, though.

Westcoast Walker said...

Barb - thanks, I can hook you up any time!

Sean - I hear you about the DNA thing - 99% of most (sane) people wouldn't give a rip about this sort of thing - as for me, I start to twitch and salivate when I walk into a room stalked with music

Liberality - Patti Smith is a gem, she did a half decent coves album recently. She was clearly a pioneer and I am impressed around how vital and raw some of earlier music sounds and how well it stands up still.

Randal - yes, those vinyl only releases are evil - part of a conspiracy by the ever growing international vinyl lobby putting pressure on the record labels.

Kevin - wow, we're in sync with our recent Eno related exploration - I can understand how his ambient stuff is everyone's thing, though I would recommend giving Tiger Mountain a few more tries, it might grow on you.

Freida Bee, MD said...

I really like me some Eno, but have yet to really give Patti Smith a thorough listen- to. Will keep my eyes open.

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